The Supreme Court

The Supreme Court is the highest court in civil and criminal matters. Its primary function is to establish judicial precedents concerning the interpretation and application of the law, guiding and ensuring uniformity in the administration of justice by examining and ruling on appeals on the basis of the appellate system. In addition, the Supreme Court hears and decides cases concerning extraordinary appeals, and provides the President of the Republic with legal opinions regarding pardons and matters concerning the autonomy of Åland. The Supreme Court overseas the application of the law by lower courts.
The Supreme Court employs approximately 80 people in total.  Most of the employees are professional experts in legal issues.  The office staff includes about 30 people working in a supportive role.

The Supreme Court is headed by a President. The other members of the Supreme Court are known as Justices.  The lawyer referendaries prepare decision proposals for the members of the Court concerning cases to be heard. The official titles of the referendaries are Referendary Counsellor, Judicial Secretary or Senior Judicial Secretary.

The Chief Secretary, as the Court President’s closest assistant and administrative chief, ensures that the Supreme Court functions properly.

The role of the office personnel is to handle tasks relating to the administration of the office and assist the judicial staff. The majority of the office staff consists of secretaries and clerks as well as, for example, an administrative lawyer, communications and information service personnel, a systems analyst, registrars and attendants. The Supreme Court also employs men performing non-military service in various tasks, where necessary.

The members and referendaries of the Supreme Court have a degree in law, at minimum. The office staff mainly have an upper secondary,  educational background  or some degree of higher education.

The Supreme Court is a court located in Helsinki which considers judicial issues from a wide range of perspectives. It provides its employees with an opportunity to familiarise themselves with the administration of justice at the highest level. 

Published 2014-12-31 at 13:02, updated 2020-07-14 at 11:59


Good to know about us

The Supreme Court is a court which establishes judicial precedents. Precedents are established in issues where the law does not provide a clear answer. They provide legal norms for future similar legal disputes and aim to ensure that courts in different parts of the country interpret the law in the same way.

Contact Information

The Supreme Court
Visiting address: Pohjoisesplanadi 3,00171 Helsinki
+358 2956 40000

The website of the Supreme Court